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The DirtyBird Mud Run is a record setting, downhill obstacle mud run like you’ve never seen before.

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DirtyBird Mud Run Reviews

Average rating: 2 / 5 from 5 reviews.

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Great Idea & poor execution

Aug 07, 2015 by GC2

I was thrilled to hear about this OCR and proud to run the inaugural year, I couldn't wait for my heat to start, but then at the end I was left feeling "That's it?” I've been running OCR's for years (ever since the 5k's, 10k's, half-marathons and marathons became routine). I grew up in SLC and skied most of my life at Snowbird. The thought of an OCR at Snowbird was an exciting one, an OCR at Snowbird had me salivating, dreaming what can this gorgeous mountain throw at me? Utah Mountains are without question one of kind, but the DirtyBird Mud Run was a real disappointment. To me it felt more like a trail run with just a few obstacles along the way. The opportunity for a truly EPIC race is there. I pray that since this was the first year it was just simply a case of growing pains and inexperience and 2016 will be 1000 times better. I will be there for 2016 and I have a verbal commitment from my wife that she will sign up for 2016 as her first foray into the wonderful world of OCR. Please people of the DirtyBird Race organizers make 2016 the epic race it can be. Make it 8+ miles and jack up the obstacle numbers (15+) and their intensity , utilize the hiking and biking trails, deliver on the slip'n'slide and make that bank wall run bigger and better (3, 4, or even 5 banks). I know that when you're trying to compete against races like Toughmudder, Spartan, Warrior Dash, Etc. you need that WOW factor and you have it; it's called Snowbird. The backdrop of Little Cottonwood Canyon and a start line of 11,000 feet you have that WOW factor, you have the right ingredients now you just need the right chief and the DirtyBird 2016 will easily be a top ten OCR in the country.

I don't want to point out the negatives; the comments before me have done that. The comments by Sweet Chops did an excellent and eloquent job, we both feel very similar on this race and I believe we both see the true potential this race has to offer.

Good Luck on planning next year and I promise I will see you there (hopefully with my wife) on July16th, 2016. I can't wait to see your improvements.

Greg C.

Great concept; middling execution.

Jul 22, 2015 by Sweet Chops

This has the potential to be one of the most unique and challenging OCR events in the country. But good God, they’ve got a lot of work to do.

The disappointment began quickly, with the marquee race element – “The World’s Longest and Highest Slip n’ Slide”. First of all, that was a lie; it was three different slides scattered down the slope of the basin. And second, two of three were broken. (The second one was completely abandoned – not a staff member in sight.) They weren’t able to pump enough creek water out onto the slides until the third one, which only had one lane open, manned by guys with a hose and dish soap. When I got there, Dirtybird’s film crew held the line up for 20 minutes while they desperately tried to get footage of someone – anyone – being able to actually slide down the damn thing.

What followed was a chairlift ride back to the top of the basin. Pretty cool. Except that Dirtybird didn’t tell anyone about this until we were on the tram, didn’t provide a course map beforehand, and didn’t feel the need to warn us that immediately after sliding into snow run-off water that we’d be 100 feet in the air exposed to alpine winds. Which is where the hypothermia started kicking in.

The broken slip n’ slide began the theme of obstacles that needed to be constructed far enough in advance that they could be tested and vetted, and then responsibly maintained on the event day.

There was a fantastically fun 2-story leap into an airbag that was the runaway crowd favorite. So it was a shame to hear afterwards that it was supposed to be 3 stories. But the organizers ran out of time to build the entire element.

There was a tube sliding obstacle that – again - had no staff or volunteer anywhere near it to keep runners away from the exposed rock at the bottom of one of them that could have easily broken a tailbone. This is the same tailbone that I personally could have broken at the inflatable slide finish line that dumped me at high speed directly onto concrete. Completely inexcusable.

Dirtybird advertised “15+ never-seen-before obstacles”. You can’t really do that if you’re simply repurposing several obstacles from Dirty Girl without even bothering with a new paint job. Dirtybird also claimed that this would be a 10K-length event. At the end of the day, I’d be surprised if anyone at Dirtybird knows exactly how long it was, but it sure as hell wasn’t 10K. One fitbit log I saw at the finish clocked it at 10 ½ miles. The abovementioned lack of staff throughout the course is particularly worrisome since runners getting lost or injured were scattered across two sides of a mountain (one side of which didn’t have a single water station).

And I don’t know if it’s drought issues in California or watershed issues in Utah, but I’m getting pretty sick of "mud runs" that don’t have a single square foot of mud.

On the plus side, the location is well-nigh unbeatable. The views up and down Little Cottonwood Canyon all the way to the Salt Lake Valley made for a great excuse to stop and catch your breath. Wide basins and bowls, trickling creeks, alpine meadows and forest tracks, even the smells of the trailside flowers. It beats the hell out of doing an obstacle run on a motocross racetrack.

And there were times when Dirtybird managed moments of real inspiration and creative uses of the environment and character of Snowbird. A seemingly innocuous obstacle of running on curved berms echoed the feeling of a snowboarder carving an edge in deep powder. A massive tangle of timber logs was more fun and challenging than the usual ‘climb up and over’ obstacle and was completely unique to the mountain forest environment. When the course pulled away from the fire roads and cat tracks of the front nine of the course and went into the hiking/mountain bike trails, there was suddenly a steep slope of seesaws winding through the trees. It was a challenging, fun and truly ‘never-before-seen’ obstacle in the middle of the woods that celebrated the terrain we were in. I think that more obstacles like these that creatively take advantage of Snowbird’s topography and personality would set Dirtybird apart instead of just trucking in another wall or cargo net to climb over.

Another great element of the course was exploiting the ski resort facilities - starting the course with a tram ride up to 11,000 feet, crisscrossing the course on chairlifts, running through the basin access tunnel accompanied by disco lights and club music. And this isn’t a pro or a con, but there were plenty of people on the mountain who may have thought of this as a fun run and weren’t prepared for the toll that downhill running, limping and trudging for 3,000+ vertical feet would take on the body. And at altitude. Even though it kicked my ass, it was another thing that makes this course unique.

As I said, there weren’t many staff and volunteers, but those that were there were friendly and helpful. The registration process was quick and efficient. Free bag check, free course photos, and only $5 parking. The vibe at the base plaza was great. And the medal is pretty badass. I’ve heard from some people that in the later waves, correct t-shirt and compression sleeve sizes weren’t available and water stations were dry, which is also a damn shame.

I’m sure that Dirtybird and Human Movement are disappointed that the vision they had for this inaugural run didn’t happen the way they planned or promoted it. I hope they improve their organizational and operational issues. I almost feel like they’ll have a chip on their shoulder to execute above and beyond next year. And the bottom line is that for all my criticisms, for all my stiff leg muscles, I had a lot of fun and I want to do it again next summer. I really want this event to succeed.

Huge disappointment

Jul 15, 2015 by Jon

The main selling point for this run was the world's longest slip'n'slide. The slide was actually 3 separate slides that involved several minutes of running to get from one to the next. What's even worse, none of the slides were working. They seemed to think they would be able to pull enough water from tiny mountain streams, and clearly didn't do any testing in the days leading up to race day. We were forced to walk next to the slides. The few places I did try to slide down, there were lots of rocks sticking up into the sheeting that would have really hurt had I actually been moving at any speed.
Moving on, the obstacles were pathetic, and they were all tightly grouped in one area of the front side. There was *no mud* except for an unintentional puddle on the back side. The only decent obstacle, the high jump into an airbag, had a 45 minute line.
The race amounted to riding up to the top of snowbird, then running down the back side on access roads, riding a lift partway up, then running down the front side on access roads with the occasional spur on some of the mount bike paths. All this would have been doable for free. At the very end there was a short inflatable slide that landed you in 1 ft of brown water (still no mud) with a very solid, rocky bottom that you hit quite hard after sliding off the pads at the bottom – I wonder how many racers finished with bruised tailbones?
I was really excited for this race. The concept is great, but the execution was piss poor. Given the cost and all the advertising promises, this was a real ripoff. I hope they will improve on this and will give them a second chance next year since this was their first time (though the company that set it up supposedly does mud runs all over – so they have no excuses).

Jul 15, 2015 by CB

LAME 'mud' run. Virtually NO mud on this race. I didn't get dirty/wet until the finish slide. But plenty of running...90% downhill.
Lots of hype for this one: Worlds longest waterslide but with only a trickle of water running down one lane. (More running) '15' obstacles was another claim. The obstacles were weak. Very little effort put into this.
Water stations were bunched together...no stations when it was needed most -- during the last 1/4 of the trail.
Ran out of the size of t-shirts we ordered. (Kind of defeats the purpose of the pre-registration doesn't it?)
Looks like most of the budget was spent on the finisher's medal.
Too much hype for a lame event. Dirtybird? More like the Dirty-turd.

Not Very Dirty

Jul 14, 2015 by Amy Culver

Two of the main reasons I attended this event was be part of this inaugural event and to experience the World Record Longest Slip N Slide that the organizers were touting. Was a bit disappointed to find out that the slide was actually broken up into 3 separate slides in 3 different locations and was further disappointed to find out that the first 2 slides were not operational on race day due to a blown fuse on their water pumps.
Starting the race at 11000' feet was actually really cool and the best parts were the tunnel through the mountain and the air bag jump (despite the long lines).
There really should have been at least one water station on the back side of the mountain where the water slides were, rather than putting them all on the face of the mountain. Furthermore, all of the water stations were fairly close together in the middle of the race, leaving no water stations for the last third of the course. Luckily I always bring my own otherwise I would have been severely dehydrated by the end.
This was definitely more run than obstacles. The organizers said it was going to be 6.5 miles but according to my fitness tracker, it was just over 10. Personally, this would have been much more enjoyable if there were a lot more obstacles to break up the running parts and make it muddy, it is called a mud run after all. Apart from sweat and water from the slip n slide and the slide at the finish, I was as clean when I finished as when I started. I will be very interested to see what kind of changes are made for next year.

The Ultimate Mud Run, Obstacle Race and Adventure Race Guide , USA 2.0 3.0 5 5 I was thrilled to hear about this OCR and proud to run the inaugural year, I couldn't wait for my heat to start, but then at the end I was left feeling "That's it?” I've been ru